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We Finally Got Our Tree

Posted by on September 5, 2015

December 16, 21 and 22, 1943.A few letters to Dad form the family back home in Albany. Anna started to get Dad’s letters while he is on travel duty in Nebraska. As always, there are updates about the baby, and preparations continue to be made for the first Christmas without the boys at home.

The baby had a sore throat and a temperature of 102. “Her whole body was hot like fire and her cheeks were like two red beets on her face.” The doctor was called to check her. There is no mention if the Doctor provided any medication, but the baby seemed to get over things quickly and “ate her supper as usual without any fuss and her cheeks aren’t flaming.”

Anna writes that the baby’s appetite is strong and that there is very little she won’t eat. Anna records that in addition to the staples you would expect a baby to eat (milk, vegetables, soup, apple juice, pudding, apple sauce and jello) she also eats liver, chicken, golomki and galareta as well as broccoli, turnips and spinach. Anna writes, “…she loves to eat. I wonder if she takes after you or Eddie or me? Must be the three together to produce such a good appetite.”

Anna takes a break to “look into our bedroom on account of a lot of commotion and there Eddie had Terry under the covers with him and they were playing to beat the band.” She goes on to write about how devoted her husband is to their daughter. “If anything ever happened to her – which I hope never will- I think he would go crazy. The sun rises and sets on her. His whole life is centered around her now. It’s amazing how he changed.”

Anna says that they got Dad’s letter from Nebraska and asks, “What were you doing there? Is it a military secret? I know that you haven’t mentioned why and where you went only that you would be in the neighboring state.” She also notes, “Mama was so pleased that you enjoyed…the box which she sent.”

Anna writes that she has doubts about the rationing system, particularly with meats. “This week in the paper I saw where in a Watervliet dump they found 3,000 pounds of meat and it was starting to spoil. It just goes to show you there is no shortage…it sure will make a shortage if they keep on throwing out food like that instead of letting people buy it. If you don’t have points, you don’t get meat.”

Christmas preparations continue. “We finally got our tree. It is a better looking affair than the one we had last year and has more branches on it. It is about five and a half feet high … We sure will get a kick out of fixing it up for Terry. After that it will be a battle…to keep her away from it.”

Now that the baby is walking and increasingly exploring around the house, the family has to deal with the new way of things – especially around Christmas. “Today she found her way into daddy’s closet and found her toys in it and right away commenced to play with them. Daddy just stood there watching her and when I come in Swish – no toys and baby was out of the room. She didn’t even know what happened. I know maybe it seems foolish to do such things because she won’t understand yet but Christmas is Christmas and I don’t want to spoil it by letting her play with the toys ahead of time.”

The last latter from home before Christmas is written on the 22nd. There is a little bit of snow falling as they get out for some last minute shopping, do some house cleaning and wrap the presents. With all the commotion around the house, they’ve placed the baby in her playpen which she “hates like poison”. Anna writes that “Daddy calls the pen ‘pig-pen’ and little Terry ‘Swiniatko’. The way she looks sometimes all dirty she resembles a pig somewhat.”

Once again, it looks like Anna’s husband Eddie has some good friends. “Today Eddie bought home a whole box of writing paper and it has my whole name and initial printed on it and he says some guy did it for him and he was giving it to me as a present. In the future I will write a few letters with my name on [it] to look important. Eddie buys me more things and I must learn to appreciate him some more. For me and baby nothing costs too much as long as he works and can pay for it. I only wish that I could by him a wrist watch for a present. I wish I was working now and I would buy him one even if it cost a hundred bucks…”

The letterhead  stationery that Eddie got for Anna.  of it she writes "In the future I will write a few letters with my name on to look important."

The letterhead stationery that Eddie got for Anna. of it she writes “In the future I will write a few letters with my name on it to look important.”

Anna signs off with a hearty “MERRY CHRISTMAS BROTHER!”

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